Work woes

Has it always been like this or did the pandemic just change things? I envy the seemingly much more balanced work life systems that are present in Europe. These European countries seem to really care about their people with their mandated month long vacations, paid maternal and paternal leave and there always seems to be some perk or another for European workers. I may wax prophetically as an American looking in on another European progression. I can’t help but feel like they have it better.

The standard work day for full time workers is 8 hours a day. This does not include the times many Americans use for commuting. It is fair to say half of one’s day is devoted to a job. This is a lot of time when you really start to add up the math. As an American worker ,you likely spend way more time with your boss and coworkers than you do a spouse or your family. There’s something about that equation that feels wrong as hell. The fearful, insecure worker in me struggles to write this out because it is not attack on my job but the system that encourages and demands what it does from workers. It is not surprising then the failures of the American family to stay a cohesive unit, it does not surprise me all the marriages that end in breakups and divorces, it does not surprise me that we have a loneliness epidemic in this country.

That Protestant work ethic from the 1600s is fucking us up hard. It comes from a time when the whole world was a whole other world. In 2022, when we have supposedly made so many advancements in life, work has to be reconfigured. Happiness needs to be somewhere in the equation, worker security needs to be somewhere in the equation and the whole system needs to truly be dissected. It’s interesting how much talk is done about that controlling , nefarious 1% power class and yet so few avenues to dismantle its’ hold. What would it take for them to share a little more and still retain what they have ?

Burn out and dis-satisfaction is to be expected in systems that posit profits over people. These ugly systems that one must claw through just to survive are not designed with wellness in mind. It should be no wonder when we all get sick.

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